Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Movie style ‘mine robber’ appeals for bail

By Mashudu Netsianda

Two armed robbers raided Turk Mine and robbed the mine of gold, a CCTV camera system, cellphones and a drum containing 20 litres of diesel after tying the security guards and disconnecting electricity at the mine.

Turk Mine in Bubi
Turk Mine in Bubi

This emerged when one of the suspects, Wellington Moyo (34) from Zvishavane approached the High Court seeking bail pending trial.

He is facing armed robbery charges.

Moyo allegedly ganged up with Hardlife Mazheke (29) and they armed themselves with rifles and raided Turk Mine also known as Casmyn Mine, one of the country’s biggest gold mines.

In papers before the court, Moyo through his lawyers VJ Mpofu and Associates filed an application for bail pending trial at the Bulawayo High Court citing the State as a respondent.

In his bail statements, Moyo said he was wrongfully implicated, arguing that there was no evidence linking them to the alleged offence.

“Applicant denies that he and the other co-accused Hardlife Mazheke or one or both of them unlawfully and intentionally used an unknown type of rifles to disarm the security personnel at the mine and went away with 20 litres of diesel, CCTV camera cables and digital video recorders,” argued Moyo’s lawyers.

The lawyers said the State case was weak hence it would not induce the suspect to abscond if granted bail.

“The applicant is a man of fixed abode and cooperated well with the police during investigations. The fear of abscondment expressed by the investigations officer is unsubstantiated as there has never been an attempt to do so,” said Moyo’s lawyers.

The State is yet to respond to the application.

It is alleged that on December 23 last year, Moyo and his accomplice raided Turk Mine in the early morning hours.

The suspects, who were armed with rifles proceeded to Dawn Compound which houses Safeguard Security employees where they forcibly opened a locked door into Safeguard Security supervisor Mr Emmanuel Gwaenda’s house.

They allegedly pointed a gun at Mr Gwaenda while demanding his cellphones and keys to the plant.

He surrendered the keys and cellphones after which the suspects force marched him to the next room where Mr Tapfumaneyi Munetsi and Mr Anthony Chiwange who are security guards were sleeping.

The suspects took cellphones from Messrs Munetsi and Chiwange before forcing them to lie on the floor facing down.

The suspects allegedly tied the two guards’ hands to the back using ropes and gagged them with reflector bibs.

The armed robbers allegedly force-marched Mr Gwaenda to the plant supervisor, Mr Philimon Muzamba’s house.

The suspects allegedly ordered Mr Gwaenda to knock on the door and call out Mr Muzamba and pretend to him that all was well.

When Mr Muzamba opened the door, the robbers immediately pointed guns at him and demanded keys to the plant.

They ordered him to open the gates to the boilers and while inside Moyo and Mazheke used unknown objects to force open boilers in the plant and took eight pregnant wire cathodes, a container with 20 litres of diesel, CCTV camera cables and a digital video recorder.

Two days later detectives from Zvishavane CID who were on a stop and search patrol intercepted one Thulani Ishmael Nkala and recovered a Samsung cellphone that matched the description of the one stolen at Turk Mine.

Further investigations led to the arrest of Moyo and Mazheke and recovery of four more stolen cellphones. The Chronicle